The key to it all….

Recently I addressed a conference called “All Your Relations” in San Diego — there was an audience of close to 1,000 people there and yes, I will admit it, I was scared to death. What was truly amazing was the intimacy of that huge group and their total receptivity to the message of the power of acknowledgment. One person who had attended shared the message with her husband, who then decided to present information from my book and the seven principles at a Toastmasters’ gathering. Here’s what Lorraine, who had attended the conference at which I spoke wrote about the response to her husband John’s 20 minute presentation:

“Participants found it difficult to cross the line from compliment to acknowledgement. One lady said it created a feeling of vulnerability in her that was scary. ”

I thank that “one lady” deeply for stating so clearly what one of the biggest obstacles is to acknowledging people profoundly and generously: our own vulnerability. She is so right about her fear and concern, but overcoming that fear brings about miracles. Yes, we do have to make ourselves somewhat vulnerable to deliver the kinds of acknowledgments that go beyond a  thank you, beyond mere recognition. We worry about how we will look to another, whether they will think they are being manipulated, whether they will accept or reject our gift. But the results when we take this risk are phenomenal. Vulnerability is a precious part of the human condition, and I urge us all to take advantage of it. Let me know your thoughts on this important facet of acknowledgment. And thanks to both Lorraine and John for sharing this powerful message.